The film follows three young men and their time spent in the French suburban "ghetto," over a span of twenty-four hours. Vinz, a Jew, Saïd, an Arab, and Hubert, a black boxer, have grown up in these French suburbs where high levels of diversity coupled with the racist and oppressive police force have raised tensions to a critical breaking point. During the riots that took place a night before, a police officer lost his handgun in the ensuing madness, only to leave it for Vinz to find. Now, with a newfound means to gain the respect he deserves, Vinz vows to kill a cop if his friend Abdel dies in the hospital, due the beating he received while in police custody.Written by
The trip across Paris is strange : the three characters should arrive at the Saint-Lazare station(north-west of Paris), coming from ChanteloupLesVignes. Yet, when they arrive, they are in front of the Montparnasse station(south of Paris), on the Rennes street. Then, they go to Asterix place, on the boulevard Pierre Ier of Serbia, close to Iena Place (west of Paris), and when they try to catch the last train, this time they are at the Saint-Lazare station, the right one to go back. But then, when they are on the roof, they see the Eiffel Tower and the Trocadero from the south-east, being probably close to Montparnasse station. Then, they come across a sculpture, L'Ecoute, in the Halles Garden(center of Paris), before going back. Hence, their trip goes : south, west, north-west, south and center of Paris. See more »
It's about a society on its way down. And as it falls,it keeps telling itself: "So far so good... So far so good... So far so good." It's not how you fall that matters. It's how you land.
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In some English language subtitled (mainly American) versions the reference to the character of Said's friend who lives in the "posh towers" is 'Snoopy'. However, the untranslated dialogue says 'Asterix' and the woman who Vinz speaks to on the intercom laughs and says 'No, but his friend Obelix is here', whereas the translated version says 'No, but his friend Charlie Brown is.'. The reason Asterix and Obelix were changed to Snoopy and Charlie Brown in the subtitled version was because a lot of people are more familiar with those characters and possibly wouldn't understand the joke relating to Asterix and Obelix, which are two best friends in various French cartoon books by Goscinny & Uderzo. See more »
I have seen La Haine a handful of times now and with each viewing it just gets better.
The first thing that stands out about the film is the cinematography. It's rare that a film like this is considered both genuine and a good example of it's art but La Haine is both.
The plotline is compelling and realistic and neatly shows the way that inner city life has gone in the big cities in France as well as proving that despite the romance of Paris, it suffers from the same problems as any other major city.
The characters are above all believable and the cast did a great job. The quality of acting is simply stunning from several actors and it would be a shame if it was simply dismissed as "just another foreign art-house movie" by audiences outside France.
Above all the film whilst showing the influences of American films and society has a very clear sense of it's own identity and at no time does it feel like another US Ghetto film transposed to France. This is a major boon to the film and it stands out of the crowd for this, even though many people will dislike it because of this. It is, however, their loss.
It's hard to recommend this film highly enough, but I should add that more than one viewing is required to get the best from La Haine.
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